The aging of the population is driving the market for facial rejuvenation products. Worldwide, billions of dollars are spent annually on facial rejuvenation products and services. But can we achieve good results with natural methods? What kind of natural treatments can be used for the elimination of wrinkles or skin aging? Pia Huber is a naturopath and acupuncturist. She also has experience in facial rejuvenation. Here are a few tips to prevent skin aging and take care of your skin, naturally!
Dr. Pia Huber, what is your opinion on aesthetic procedures and the products offered on the market?
Facial rejuvenation seems to have become yet another consumer good like handbags or iPhones. I do feel that some means to keep our looks young are misguided and lack understanding of the meaning of age and health. Cosmetic surgery is one of the ways to change our looks, I do have very mixed feelings about.
On the one hand it is a wonderful art to enhance people’s lives when it comes to correct stark disfigurement, which may have occurred through accidents or illness. On the other hand it can be misused to change characteristic features, which may not correspond to standard beauty but give some people that special look which makes them stand out of the crowd.
I am usually greatly more attracted to people whose faces are allowed to age gracefully, but often repulsed by faces, which seem frozen through surgical stretching or botox treatments. It seems to me that sadly these two procedures also supply quick fixes, where prolonged care gives better and more natural and thus more beautiful results.
Regular facial care such as cleaning (with plenty of water), the use of moisturisers, facial massages and facial acupuncture can be of great benefit to help faces to stay young in a very positive way. Aging however can also add to attraction and should thus be allowed to play a role. It adds interest, maturity and grace to many a face, where a young look would simply look out of place.
What do you think of collagen creams, injections or even supplements that promise to help prevent wrinkles and renew older faces?
I am suspicious of the many promises made by producers. It is their business to make us believe their promises in order to make us buy their products.
Nevertheless creams and supplements can play a role to help our looks to stay young and our skin to be healthy. It is important for our skin as well as our general health that we look out for natural products without artificial ingredients especially parabens, mineral oil derivatives and artificial colourings.
We should also find a product we feel comfortable with long term since continued care is key in my opinion. We should thus choose what we are able to afford and are happy to keep doing.
Can you achieve good results with natural methods?
Yes, I would even argue that natural methods are those which can bring us long term results no artificial intervention will achieve.
We have evolved in and with the natural world and our bodies are still tuned best with nature’s products.
What kind of treatments do you use for the elimination of eye bags, senile spots, skin aging, facial sagging or wrinkles?
The skin can be a mirror of the state of general health and wellbeing. Eye bags are often seen after prolonged lack or bad sleep. It is thus very important to address any existing sleep problems or to stop living on adrenaline and re-balance our lives with proper rest and sleep periods as much as possible.
Senile spots, skin aging and facial sagging should be addressed by a diet giving us all the nutrients we need which means it should contain plenty of fruit and vegetable with the emphasis being on vegetables rather than fruit.
The government’s recommendation to have five portions a day is compromising, we should really aim for nine a day. If you prefer to stop counting just imagine that HALF OUR FOOD PLATES should consist of vegetables and fruit.
Also whenever possible eat organic to avoid ingestion of hormones and pesticides, but also make sure that you always wash fruits and vegetables unless they are peeled. Of course as mentioned above it is also good to get a good skin care discipline.
With these measures in place it may occasionally be justified to add some additional help including facial massages or facial and body acupuncture which can soften wrinkles.
We should also remember that our body works and keeps best when we use it optimally. This means that we should take regular exercise in fresh air (best in green surroundings for plenty of oxygen).
We may also inspect our specific wrinkles. What do our faces look like when our wrinkles are emphasized? I bet it is when we look worried or when we focus on something. Counteracting to that is smiling and laughing – try it, it is very difficult to wrinkle your forehead when you smile.
So put on your Mona Lisa smile whenever you are commuting on the bus, the underground or overground. It will have the added benefit of putting us all into a good mood.
How important is the diet? Are there types of foods that can really help to smooth wrinkles and diminish dark eye circles, bags and facial discolorations?
Diet is very important as already outlined above. Our guts are a continuation of our outer skin and the two are thus intrinsically linked. We need plenty of fibres and plain water to keep our bowels in good working order. This will ensure that we can absorb the nutrients from our foods and eliminate toxins our body is exposed to.
Vitamins and minerals are very important to keep the body units, our cells, happy. We get those predominantly from fruits and vegetables, the latter being particularly important for the supply of minerals.
Healthy cells and thus healthy skin is also supported by omega 3, 6 and 9 and it is thus definitely beneficial to eat plenty of oily fish and/or include good oils such as virgin olive oil and flax seed oil in our diet. Most of us additionally benefit from supplements be it fish oils, starflower or primrose oil.
Would you recommend anything else to our readers – women and men – who are interested in facial rejuvenation?
Keep smiling – it activates the muscles which are contributing most to a beautiful face.